Will it be Qasim next?

Pakistan’s missile naming convention is unchanged

Babar was an Afghan warlord from the Ferghana valley, who after invading India in the 15th century, founded the Mughal dynasty that ruled India until the British took over. Pakistan has named its latest cruise missile after him. Despite publicly engaged in confidence-building measures with India, the naming of this missile follows a familiar pattern of naming its missiles after Afghan chiefs who invaded India (and ironically what is today Pakistan) at different times in history.

Mohammad of Ghor (Ghaur), was an Afghan warlord who invaded India in the 12th century. Pakistan named its long range ballistic missile after him.

Mahmud of Ghazni, was an Afghan raider who plundered India in the 11th century, who destroyed the famous temple at Somnath after looting its fabled riches. Pakistan named a ballistic missile in his honour.

Ahmed Shah Abdali was an Afghan chief who raided India in the 18th century. Pakistan named (or rather, renamed the North Korean Taepodong-1) ballistic missile after him.

Pakistan’s Tipu hasn’t taken off yet. But Tipu Sultan, who is celebrated as a hero by Indian nationalists, does not quite fit the profile of Ghori, Ghazni, Abdali or even a Babar. That leaves Mohammed bin Qasim, an eighth-century Arab general who first brought Islam to India. Perhaps he’s next.

Related Post: The origins of this naming convention

21 thoughts on “Will it be Qasim next?”

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  3. They’re so stupid to name a missile after Mahmud of Gazni. Didn’t he only succeed at his 17th attempt? Ok, admittedly he did some damage though.

    Hey, a nice connect question for a quiz! Connect Mahmud of Gazni to Babri Masjid demolition: Mahmud of Gazni -> Somnath temple -> Advani Rath yatra -> Babri masjid destruction.

    I was wondering today about how Pakistan is a totally failed state. Their two reasons for existence have been to destroy India and annex Kashmir. Besides that, the government has done little else to politically, economically or socially benefit the citizens. In spite of a single-minded focus in terms of spending resources to achieve those two raison d’etres (if ever there was such a word!) for over fifty years, they’ve failed!

  4. Ghazni, Ghouri, Quasim, weren’t these kings the one’s who ransacked, raped and pillaged in Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi, Multan before only some of them made in into Indian regions?

    Ordinary Pakistani (west punjabi, machoist, *slightly* dumb):
    “Yay!! we have Ghazni missiles named after the king who crushed Hindustan!!”

    Ghazni (from his grave, alone, not with 99 virgins):
    “I raped you f#ckers first” *muhahaha*

    Ordinary Indian (reads only the sports & bollywood sections):
    “So … those b#stards made Ganguly the captain again, uh!”

    Amuzements aside, this missile is either a modified American Tomahawk or a shipped (Media standard: never to use the word ‘proliferation’ for the Chinese) Chinese HN-1 which itself was a Soviet era KA-55 variant.

    The range claim by the Pakistanis of 500km could be valid, although they have bull sh#tted about the ground hugging, sea skimming capabilities.

  5. Nice thinking — I like the thinking that there is some logic behind the naming convention.

    Maybe India should name its next missile – TIPU? what do you say?

  6. Nice post.

    This obsession with being more Arab than Arab/the invader (Afghan or whoever) is explored very well by Naipaul in ‘Beyond Belief’.

  7. In all fairness though, Babur stayed behind and made Hindustan his own. Ghauri, Ghaznavi, Abdali – true to their barbarian nature – plundered, raped, pillaged, and went back to where they came from.

    Just out of curiosity – what do people think of Nadir Shah, the fine gentleman who plundered Delhi and stole the peacock throne? More Tipu than Ghauri? Or less?

  8. for the sake of my book’s publicity, i sincerely hope that the next one is called Qasim. In fact, I’d like to start a petition to that effect.

  9. Raven,

    Most reactions go, “Nadir Shah? Who was that? Ah! The fellow who had something to do with smuggling something in a turban” 🙂


    I’ll support your petition 🙂

  10. Srirangan,

    Isn’t the KA-55/AS-15 a air-launched missile? Babur seems to be surface launched.

    Btw, earlier this year, Japanese authorities publicly worried about Iran transferring some Ukrainian KA-55s to North Korea.

  11. The funny thing is babar fought again ibrahim lodhi, a muslim king. So babar must have killed a good number of muslims in his conquest. Same with nadir shah; ghazni and ghori must have raped a large number of women in the border areas of india which is presently pakistan. I think jinnah did a great thing by creating another country for these morons.

  12. All the missiles are Made in China/Korea assembled in Pakistan to see whether they are working or not!fooling their people to create a false image of their scientists/military image of the Army

  13. We are planning to launch a SAARC blog. Only rules: No political and or religious discussions. We want to creat a cultural fusion there.

    May we ask you to join the team. Please reply at (itiswrite@gmail.com)and add some blurb about you as well. Thanks.

  14. The pakis have named thier missiles after muslim rulers who were important in establishing muslim rule over (north) india
    Mahmud destroyed the shahi dynasty which ruled over presentday punjab
    Muhammad Ghori laid the foundations of muslim rules over Delhi
    Everybody knows about Babar..

  15. Ha ha pooor indian are happy by making their poor assisments ….Go and morn… your FM has been fucked by UN’s report on OIL FOR FOOD SCANDLE . yet another greedy act from indian higher ups, blaming Pakistan hahahaha…. Where did BRaMos come …rusian scientists fucked madhori or ayshweria and BroMos was born….

    Fanticized Indian Army got madel by making fake Kargil movie which was later turned out in public and all the madels were take back …. so many sories …so many fake claims. but when time come to fight Pakistan in 2002 huge army gathered in the boarders for almost an year and went back with their wet pants….and now UN’s reports said this great indian nation with be the top AIDS affected country by the year 2020……hahahahahah ….Pakistan is so small as compare to india but enough to make its ass aching all the time.

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